Operation Tramline, run by Surrey Police alongside Highways England, targeted dangerous, distracted, or anti-social drivers on motorways and major roads from July 31 to August 11.
The police caught footage of 140 offences, including 79 using a mobile phone while driving, six driving without due care and attention, and 23 not being in proper control of their vehicle. In some cases, people were even reading, writing, or eating while attempting to drive.
Coordinator Sergeant Sharon Kingston of the Roads Policing unit said: “Poor driver behaviour leads to people losing their lives and for many it seems driving is still secondary to other activities, but if a driver is not paying attention it can have fatal consequences.
“Footage captured during the operation shows dangerous, anti-social and distracted driving is still all too prevalent and we’ve seen examples over the last 18 months of lives lost because a driver has not had their full attention on the road.
A driver was even captured eating from a container in one hand with a fork in the other, another was reading a broadsheet paper across the steering wheel, and there was also a taxi driver writing notes in a notebook in the outside lane of the M25.”
In total, police intervened on 148 occasions – these interventions included words of advice for minor offences, as well as Fixed Penalty Notices and summons to court for serious violations, including the use of a mobile phone while at the wheel.
Sergeant Kingston went on to say: “Many will remember the horrifying dashcam footage capturing the moment a woman and her three children were killed by a lorry driver ploughing into their stationary care while scrolling through music on his mobile phone on the A34 in August 2016. The driver was jailed for ten years.
“Incidents like these leave such a devastating impact on innocent people, which is why we will continue to target drivers who chose to disregard the safety of others.
“First trialled in 2014, Op Tramline is an ongoing campaign coordinated by Highways England, working with police forces across the country with the joint aim of reducing the number of incidents and casualties on our roads.
“Surrey Police run these partnership operations regularly, and we are very grateful to Highways England for their support.”
Anthony Thorpe, Incident Prevention Assistant Project Manager from Highways England, added: “We are delighted that 28 police forces across England and Wales are involved in Operation Tramline to lessen incidents on our roads.
“Together, we have stopped in excess of 4,000 vehicles for 5,039 offences and made 5,207 interventions in two years.”
About Freeman & Co.
Freeman & Co. are a specialist firm of road traffic and criminal defence solicitors based in Manchester but with nationwide coverage.
Freeman & Co. specialise in a wide variety of road traffic cases, ranging from drink driving, speeding and mobile phone offences, to name but a few.
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Nick is well regarded as an expert road traffic lawyer and has successfully represented many high profile clients for a variety of motoring offences as well as criminal offences.
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